News Highlights: Ant Financial has entered into a strategic partnership with Globe Telecom’s (GLO) unit Globe Fintech Innovations, Inc. (Mynt) and Ayala Corp. (AC) to accelerate financial inclusion and upgrade payment services in the Philippines. Megaworld Corp. (MEG) is looking to double the office space inventory in Iloilo Business Park from the current 45k sqm to 100k sqm by year 2020. Meanwhile, the Beverage Industry Association of the Phils. (BIAP) expressed its disapproval to a bill in Congress that plans to impose a 10% tax per liter of sugar-sweetened beverages.
Mart dipped on profit taking: Local bourse declined as investors pocket gains coming from Thursday's sessions surge. PSEi shed 38 points to close at 7,244 (-0.53% day-on-day), with most sectors declining except for financials (+0.02%). Among actively-traded shares were: ICT (-P1.60 at P75.40); URC (+0.60 at P161.10); and ALI (-P0.15 at P36.25), on P6.99bn turnover. Losers outpaced gainers 99-93, while net foreign outflows reached P47mn.
Might trade sideways: We might see our local bourse trading sideways as investors await for another batch of corporate earnings and on the absence of any economic data release. Immediate support 7,190, resistance 7,380.
Bourses lower on Samsung heir arrest: Bourses across the region traded mostly lower after the arrest on Samsung heir brought negative market sentiment.
Equities rebound on Trump optimism: Shares managed to close slightly higher above breakeven after having its seven-day rally snapped. Financials continue its ascent on the speculation of President Trump's announcement regarding corporate tax reform. US market will be closed on Monday for the Presidents Day holiday.
Crude up despite strengthening dollar: Oil prices inched higher despite rising US drilling activity and strengthening dollar. West Texas Intermediate for March up/down $0.04 to settle at $53.40/barrel.
GLO’s GCash gets investment from Jack Ma’s Ant Financial: Ant Financial has entered into a strategic partnership with Globe Telecom’s (GLO) unit Globe Fintech Innovations, Inc. (Mynt) and Ayala Corp. (AC) to accelerate financial inclusion and upgrade payment services in the Philippines. Ant Financial, which owns China’s largest online payment service Alipay, will have a ‘substantial’ minority stake in Mynt, the largest mobile money base in the Philippines. Mynt is a one-stop shop for fintech services for consumers, merchants and organizations through GCash and Fuse Lending.
MEG to double office space in Iloilo Business Park: Megaworld Corp. (MEG) is looking to double the office space inventory in Iloilo Business Park from the current 45k sqm to 100k sqm by year 2020. This will mostly cater the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector. MEG has four office towers in Iloilo at present and will open another two this year. Its optimism was triggered by the spike in demand over the last three years.
RCB reported P3.86bn (-25%) net income in 2016: Rizal Commercial Banking (RCB) reported 2016 net income at P3.86bn (-25% YoY), with net interest income reaching P15.7bn. This translates to 69% of total gross income amounting to P22.81bn and 4.06% net interest margin. Meanwhile, consumer loans grew 18.8% and SME loans increased 10.2%.
PAL plans to take in strategic investor before follow-on offering: PAL Holdings, Inc. (PAL) is planning to take in a strategic investor before it undertakes a follow-on offering. It hopes to conclude the negotiations within this year. Note that the consolidation Lucio Tan’s airline businesses (PAL and Zuma Holdings & Management Corp.) through a $166mn share-swap transaction may be completed within this quarter.
ABS filed lawsuit versus KissAsian.com: ABSCBN (ABS) filed a lawsuit against the website, KissAsian.com accused of illegally streaming its television shows and movies. ABS filed the case before the US Federal District Court for the Southern District of Florida, seeking damages of over $8 million for allegedly infringing the trademarks and registered copyrights of 27 of its shows and movies.
POPI swings to profit in 2QFY17: Prime Orion Philippines, Inc. (POPI), the operator of Tutuban Center, returned to profitability in the second quarter of its fiscal year (2QFY17, Oct-Dec 2016). It posted a net income of P16mn for the quarter, reversing the P62.1mn net loss reported same period the prior year. The improvement was driven by higher insurance premiums and commissions and reduced expenses that offset the negative impact of a decline in leasing revenues.
Mining companies to file TRO against DENR Sec. Gina Lopez: Mining companies that were shut down would look into filing a temporary restraining order (TRO) against DENR Secretary Gina Lopez for grave abuse of power. Gina Lopez previously suspended the mineral production sharing agreements (MPSAs) on 75 mines. The miners will file TRO to prohibit Lopez from enforcing the closure order and will also file graft and corruption charges.
BIAP expressed opposition on sugar tax: The Beverage Industry Association of the Phils. (BIAP) expressed its disapproval to a bill in Congress that plans to impose a 10% tax per liter of sugar-sweetened beverages. BIAP said that it would raise the prices of several consumer goods and hinder economic growth. It added that a possible decline of about P20bn in sales of sugar-sweetened beverages and a P51bn drop in revenue of related industries is also seen.